Well, that was a pretty good weekend wasn’t it? Missed chances, reckless defending, more Wenger out protests, shirt printing and wine throwing. Never a dull moment at our place. Don’t beat yourself up about it, see a chance to profiteer from it. You know what Enough is Enough.
I am a Wenger out person but the issues I have talked about previously remain, so I’m going to save you from regurgitating the same old flaws. Instead I want to focus on us – the fans. We need to get back to basics. Too many obsessions with finances, injuries, transfer dealings everything but the fundamental reason about our obsession – supporting the team.
So why do you support Arsenal?
We all have our own stories in many ways, shapes and forms but at present you’re not exactly a glory seeker, so I know it’s because you love our club. You love what we stand for and you carry that passion with you wherever you go. You feel the highs of victories and the pain of defeats. I always think the latter tells you more about your support for the club. Anyone can ride the highs but can you stand up and be counted when there are lows? I’m not a big replica shirt wearer nowadays but I do own shirts that I use for 5aside. I decided to parade around in my Arsenal shirt the day after the 8-2, as if to say, yep, I’m a Gooner and whilst it eats away at me I’m not going to shirk the responsibility that comes from being a supporter of such a brilliant club. You should always have an element of pride and respect for a club you support.
What do you expect from a match day?
Now, I know this different the world over. I can relate to both the matchday and non-matchday UK experience. For me it used to all be about the result. I didn’t care how it came about, as long as we won. If we didn’t win I’d go into full on lockdown but nowadays it’s entirely different. I love match days, I love the build up, the anticipation, I love the game and the emotion that comes with it. I love how happy Arsenal make me when we score and in a weird sort of way I even love how they never cease to annoy me and cause me endless stress because regardless of what happened on Saturday, tonight against Dortmund or at The Hawthorns at the weekend, I can’t wait attend my next game. They’re just great experiences, a chance to live life, get drunk with your mates and you just have a good laugh. What’s not to love about that? Where else can you go crazy celebrating goals, last-minute winners or equalisers. It’s an absolute adrenaline rush.
When I don’t attend I still tune in where possible and buy in to the same build up, embrace social media and try to take part in the interactive event that now comes with football. TL’s constantly updating with views and extreme knee jerk opinions, it’s brilliant. A personal favourite is the call for subs at half time when its 0-0. Never going to happen but everyone becomes the manager and wants reactions yesterday. I also follow the New York Giants so I get the opposite time zone issues that face our friends across the pond but it’s a great sport to watch I love the build up and I’ll stick by my team. My bit is getting up at 1:30 in the morning to watch them, go to bed at 5am, up at 7am and off to work. Madness I know but it’s what you do to watch your team. I just love watching the games.
So success? Is that what it’s all about?
Not at all. You see, everyone wants it but not everyone can have it. A 20 team league with several teams with aspirations of a challenge (some which deluded) but out of Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United and Liverpool, only one will be crowned champions meaning four will be left disappointed. Obvious I know but if success defines everything then for us fans, we’ve wasted 10 years of living through 38 game league seasons. We probably won’t win the league for the next three seasons irrespective of who is at the helm, so why do we bother?
We bother because we love supporting our club and we care and no manager or group of players is going to change that. We have to suck this up, the team is poor but why should support from the stands change? If anything the worse we become, the more they need us to be positive and provide backing instead of criticising every mistake as players look like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders. Support makes a difference and yet the majority of ours have become so far detached from the pure fundamentals of what support is.
You see it’s football and there’s to be enjoyed. Some don’t get it and lose out in preference for fictions programming. Our wonderful team is unpredictable but it will come good again. It’s November after all, what did we expect? We were rubbish in November when Thierry Henry was about. Stop twisting things to fuel agenda’s just for 90 minutes. If you go to games just switch off from your anger and turn it into positivity. It’s not like you don’t have time during the rest of the week.
There are many clubs far worse off than we are, so let’s not go overboard. I support the club because that’s who my Dad followed and the second I went to Highbury it was as it’s portrayed in Fever Pitch. The green of the pitch, the stadium, the closeness to the pitch. Don’t take it for granted and do your bit.
I’m a 30 something year old Gateshead lad but thankfully my Dad is a cockney and he put me on the right path in life, taking me to my first Highbury game at the tender age of six.
Despite my obvious geographical disadvantage I am a season ticket holder and I attend quite a few away days as well.
I like to express my opinion which resulted in me starting a blog. I’m delighted to be part of the WTTGT team and you can read ’The Michael Jeffares Column’ every Friday without fail.